Troubleshooting: What to Do when the Ship Hits the Fan
Here's a description of the problems customers and testers have reported and how you can resolve them. These problems are relevant to the current version. New troubleshooting information will be posted to the Stars! Web site at www.webmap.com/stars!.
Scroll through this file. If you're having problems with Stars!, hopefully you'll find the answer here.
Cannot Open Game File errors
Problem: You try to open a Stars! game, and receive an error message indicating the game file cannot be opened.
Solution: This may be caused by trying to open a game created with an older version of Stars!. Because of changes made to the current version in order to simplify and improve play, games generated by older versions will not run with the current version.
The game file may also be corrupted. Copy the previous turn from the backup directory, then rerun and submit the turn.
General Protection Fault error
Problem: Stars! crashes with a General Protection Fault in XXX, where XXX has the number 256, 1024, or ends in DRV.
Solution: This error indicates an out-of-date Windows video driver. Contact your video card manufacturer or, possibly, Microsoft for an upgrade to the newest driver. Upgrading the driver has fixed all errors of this type that have been reported.
Shortcut Keystrokes don't always work
Problem: Pressing a shortcut key does nothing.
Solution: Click on any tile that doesn't have a listbox, on a button in the Messages pane, or in the Scanner pane, then try the keystroke again.
Serial Number dialog comes back
Problem: You always seem to be getting that pesky dialog asking for a serial number.
Solution: Expect to re-enter the serial number under the following conditions:
- if you cancel the serial number dialog
- if you've exited only from the opening "splash" screen. The copy protection looks for a stars.ini file, which isn't written until you actually exit Stars! from within game. Open or start a game and choose File (Exit) to write the file.
- if the stars.ini file has been deleted, renamed or moved from the Windows directory, or if the Windows directory has been moved. Start or open a game, and choose File (Exit) to write a new stars.ini file.
- if you make a change to your computer's hardware after Stars! has been installed.
- if you move Stars! to a new computer
- if you install an upgrade patch
- if you are using the same registered copy on multiple machines, in the same multi-player game
- if you are running more than one version of Windows on the same computer, and thus are using a separate Windows directory for each version, you'll be asked for the number the first time you start Stars! under each operating system.
- if you are running Stars! on Linux under Wine - it seems to very frequently think that the hardware has changed (you might as well memorize your serial number).
Read more about copy protection and Stars!.
"Partially Done" Turn message
Problem: You're hosting a game and receive a message that a player has submitted a turn that is "partially done".
Solution: Go ahead and generate the new turn. The difference between the player's turn being marked as "done" or "partially done" is the submitted bit. When you save your turn you can choose Save, or Save and Submit. If you have used Save then the Host program considers the turn as "partially done". This is useful in network games when you want to save your work but don't want the host to Auto-Generate too soon. In a Play-By-Mail games it doesn't matter because the turn is generated manually.
You Installed the Current Version, but an Older Version Appears when You Run Stars!
Problem: You install the new version of Stars!, start it up, and the older version appears.
Solution: If you're currently running an instance of an older version of Stars!, Windows will always open another instance of that version. (This is standard Windows behavior). Close any Stars! sessions currently running and start the new version.
You CAN run different versions of Stars! simultaneously as long as each executable file has a different name.